This page displays a range of my color artwork, primarily in the Fantasy and Science Fiction genre, but also including a couple of other genre pieces in which I occasionally work. Originals and prints for sale are so indicated with each image. I do take private and publishing commissions - feel free to contact me for information at pbutler@crab.rutgers.edu. Click on the images to see a higher resolution version. All images are copyright Paul Butler and may not be used in any way without permission of the artist.

A quick note about gouache, since few people seem to know what it is. It is a kind of watercolor that paints opaquely (rather than semi-transparently like standard watercolors), but otherwise is infinitely reconstitutable with water. That means your palette technically never dries out, which works well for me because I tend to paint in short stints spread over a fair amount of time. The disadvantages of working with gouache are that the wet colors do not match the dry colors (the colors brighten as they dry, so you have to paint the picture as though it was really dark), and you cannot overpaint. The paint reactivates whenever water is added, so if you add wet paint on top of dry paint, the dry paint immediately reactivates and mixes with the new paint you are trying to put on top of it, usually resulting in mud. Thus you have to paint with the actual color you want, and cannot readily fix/edit the image once its painted. Particularly for that last reason I am now trying to work with oils as they behave more like pencils.

Cyber Thief
Oil on Masonite, 9x12 inches
Copyright 2004.

My first complete oil painting, originally done as an entry in a sci-fi art competition. Didn't come out too badly, and I will be trying to do a few more now in the medium. My wife originally posed as the model (she is very patient with me), and ironically the "gun" was originally my soprano crumhorn.

Cluaran
Gouache on board, 16x24 inches
Copyright 1995.

Portrait of my wife Stephanie based on a photograph taken by the former staff photographer ("Fred") of the University Museum of the University of Pennsylvania. The castle in the background is from a photograph I took while in Wales - the castle is one of the few Welsh built ones surviving called Dunbarton. This is my wife in her former SCA persona as a celt - cluaran means "thistle". The sword is my claymore.

Ara and the Bloodstone
Gouache, 14x14 inches
Copyright 1994.

This was actually my first complete painting in gouache. I like the pose and the facial expression, though I've never been overly happy with the hair.

Gold Dragon
Gouache on board, 16x24 inches
Copyright 1996.

More or less I wanted to paint a dragon, and this was the result. The sky and rocks in the background are from a photo from Scotland.

City Map
Pencil on paper, 11x16 inches
Copyright 1998.

A color map of a walled port city done for Inquest Magazine a while back. For closer detail, .

The Sky Pirates
Gouache on board, 11x17 inches
Copyright 1995.

Fun painting. My wife posed for the female pirate with my sword. The gun is based on an 18th century arabic one (complete with strange boarding hook) and the ship in the background is based on a 16th century merchant vessel.

We're Under Attack!
Gouache on board, 10x17 inches
Copyright 1999.

This was an cover for a module by a role-playing company called Basement Games. They wanted it to have a kind of storybook feel with this really horrible monster in the center. The creature causes blindness with its gaze (thus the guy clutching his eyes in back left).

Taking Aim
Acryllic on board, 8x10 inches
Copyright 1997.

A rare acryllic painting. This is a character from the now cancelled television series Roar!, which I happened to like a great deal.

Swamp Troll
Gouache on paper, 8x10 inches
Copyright 2000.

Creature that I did for the online gaming company Simultronics. Dark and scary!

Weapons Dealer
Gouache on paper, 8x10 inches
Copyright 2000.

Small painting done for the online gaming company Simultronics. Many of the weapons are from my own collection.

Pondering the problem.
Gouache on paper, 8x10 inches
Copyright 1999.

Character painting done for Inquest magazine for a horror game set in the 1920's/1930's.

Stef Fairy
Color Pencil on paper, 10x16 inches
Copyright 1999.

My wife Stephanie as a faery on a mushroom. I used to work a lot more with color pencils, but recently haven't found as them as much fun. This image became the basis for the pen and ink version on the black and white page, which in turn became a rubber stamp!

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